Are you struggling to get a response or writing your first executive resume in years?
No matter if you are aware of it, the resume trends have drastically changed. The document you send will be in competition with well-designed and focused resumes from other executives.
These changes can make it more difficult for you to grab a hiring manager’s attention. Your leadership message can be just as important as its content!
What has changed over the past few months and years? Aside from the fact that an objective no longer works, many resumes include a splash of color, branding headlines, or detailed summary metrics that replace tired, repetitive phrases.
These trends can be incorporated into your executive resume to help you stand out as a leader.
1 – A little color
Although it may seem overwhelming to include color on a resume, it is a useful tool that can make certain elements stand out.
A dash of red in the borders of a resume can help to distinguish different sections. This is particularly helpful for detailed resumes as it promotes easier reading.
To get an idea of how color will look against your accomplishments, you can start by adding a border to your executive resume.
You’ll need to be careful with how much color you use, especially if it’s not something you are used to using in other documents.
It’s okay to feel overwhelmed. You can also review your resume in black-and-white for a better comparison.
2 – A brand statement.
A headline or branding statement is one of the most important secrets for professional resume writers. It allows you to highlight your best strengths in your resume, which will allow employers to see the potential impact of hiring you.
For example, the headline branding “Driving Multimillion Dollar Revenue – In Aggressive Markets-With Advanced Distributor Support” was used in order to distinguish a Sales leader that had gained ground against his competitors who tried to infiltrate their accounts.
This opening statement did not need to be detailed. It was meant to set the tone for the resume with many examples of revenue accomplishment that followed.
First, identify your top 3-5 executive strengths. These include cost control, process efficiency and global team direction.
Next, consider which skill has the greatest impact on your employer. Then, formulate a concise sentence to describe your skills.
You can use more than one sentence if you come up with the same idea. Your headlines should be set apart in a different font size or with a different color.
3 – A summary that is metric- and achievement-driven.
Employers and HR professionals have probably seen thousands of “team players”, with those who are “dynamic” or “motivated” being included. Your summary is the most important part of your resume. Why not include your most noteworthy achievements and qualities?
This summary for CIO/CTO candidates, for example, includes descriptions of accomplishments, career level, distinctions, and keywords.
Trusted IT executive advisor and confidant. A pivotal leader in long-horizon business assessments and integration support. Also, he delivers targeted technical improvements. Global technology strategist and strategic business partner. Fluent in open source, analytics and modeling. InformationWorld 100, Computer World 2009 Laureate, and Federal Computer Week Knowledge Management Awards are some of the notable honors.
Consider moving your most important achievements and career highlights into the first few words or phrases of your resume, instead of saving them for later.
Employers will appreciate having the chance to look at the highlights of your career, instead of digging into your executive resume.
Your best option, even if your job search is just beginning, is to include a few cutting-edge features that will help you stand out from the crowd of resumes.
If your resume fails to take advantage of these trends, your resume could be viewed as out-of-date compared to your competitors.